USC might have Georgia on its mind instead of Citadel

No. 12 South Carolina needs a minor miracle to reach its second consecutive SEC championship game.

But even if Kentucky does not knock Georgia out of the SEC East title game, the Gamecocks still have plenty to play for the rest of the season.

South Carolina has a chance to win 10 games for the first time since 1984 and only the second time ever. The Gamecocks (8-2 overall, 6-2 SEC) try to get No. 9  Saturday against The Citadel (4-6, 2-6 Southern Conference).

It might look easy for South Carolina against the FCS team, but the Gamecocks struggled against the triple-option offense Citadel uses when they played Navy in September. The Gamecocks gave up 274 yards rushing against Navy’s triple option, pulling out a 24-21 victory.

Citadel has rushed for more than 291 yards per contest, third among FCS schools, but average just 34.6 passing yards a game. That could be a challenge to South Carolina’s defense, which is ranked ranked seventh nationally in total defense.

The Bulldogs still manage to spread the ball around. Running back Darien Robinson leads the team with 774 yards rushing and quarterback Ben Dupree has 584. Both have scored eight touchdowns. Running back Rickey Anderson has run for 429, averaging 9.8 a carry.

South Carolina has allowed an average of 132 rushing and 282.5 overall. Travian Robertson was SEC defensive lineman of the week after the 17-12 victory over Florida.

Freshman Brandon Wilds has replaced standout running back Marcus Lattimore, lost to a knee injury, running for 100 yards in two of his last three games. Quarterback Connor Shaw averages just 113 yards passing, but is 5-1 as a starter.

Coincidentally, Citadel beat South Carolina 38-35 in the last meeting in 1990, but USC leads the series, 37-9-3.

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